Sixteen of the 20 carload commodity groups posted increases from the comparable week in 2010. Those groups posting significant increases in loadings included: metallic ores, up 105.1 percent; farm products excluding grain, up 27.4 percent; motor vehicles and equipment, up 24.6 percent, and nonmetallic minerals, up 24.4 percent. Those commodity groups reporting a drop in weekly traffic saw only single digit declines: grain mill products, down 7 percent; food and kindred products, down 2.5 percent, and grain, down 1.5 percent.
Weekly carload volume on Eastern railroads was up 21.8 percent compared with last year. In the West, weekly carload volume was down 2.5 percent compared with the same week in 2010.
For the first six weeks of 2011, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 1,684,457 carloads, up 6.4 percent from last year, and 1,290,347 trailers and containers, up 7.8 percent from the same point in 2010.
Canadian railroads reported volume of 69,161 cars for the week, down 1.1 percent from last year, and 47,581 trailers and containers, up 12 percent from 2010. For the first six weeks of 2011, Canadian railroads reported cumulative volume of 414,839 carloads, down 1.7 percent from the same point last year, and 270,499 trailers and containers, up 4 percent from last year.
Mexican railroads reported 13,554 carloads for the week, down 6.4 percent compared with the same week last year, and 7,069 trailers and containers, up 6.4 percent. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first six weeks of 2011 was 85,258 carloads, up 6.3 percent compared with the same point last year, and 41,872 trailers and containers, up 10.7 percent.
Combined North American rail volume for the first six weeks of 2011 on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian, and Mexican railroads totaled 2,184,554 carloads, up 4.8 percent compared with the same point last year, and 1,602,718 trailers and containers, up 7.2 percent compared with last year.
NOTE: As previously announced, AAR has made several changes to certain carload commodity groups reported in the Weekly Rail Traffic Report, effective Week 1 of 2011. Commodity Group 18, Waste and Scrap Materials, has been split into two groups: Iron and Steel Scrap (Group 18) and Waste and Nonferrous Scrap (Group 19). Commodity Group 19 has been renumbered to Commodity Group 20. Crude Petroleum has been moved from the new Commodity Group 20 to Commodity Group 13, Petroleum Products. Finally, Distiller’s Dried Grains has been moved from Commodity Group 8 to Commodity Group 7, Grain Mill Products. Rail traffic data for 2010 has been restated in the associated charts to maintain consistency for the year-over-year comparison.
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